Jonathan Gruber

Jonathan Gruber's Weak New Excuse for His Obamacare Exchange Subsidies "Speak-O"

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C-SPAN

At a hearing in front of the House Oversight Committee this morning, MIT economist and Obamacare Architect Jonathan Gruber attempted to explain away recently unearthed comments about the Affordable Care Act's subsidies that could prove troublesome for the health law as it heads to the Supreme Court again next year. But his new explanation doesn't make much sense.

To understand today's testimony, you have to go back to a video taken in January 2012. The video shows Gruber at a conference, where he's asked about what would happen if states declined to establish health insurance exchanges under Obamacare. Gruber says in the video that "what's important to remember politically about this is if you're a state and you don't set up an exchange, that means your citizens don't get their tax credits."

This line was something of a bombshell when it was discovered this summer, because it showed Gruber, one of the most influential and widely quoted Obamacare experts, clearly saying exactly what the challengers in a series high-profile suits against the administration's implementation of the health law have argued: that, despite the Internal Revenue Service decision to allow health insurance tax credits to flow through either federal or state-run exchanges, the plain text of the law only allows for tax credits (subsidies) in state-established exchanges. The challenge was recently accepted by the Supreme Court, further raising the prominence of the remarks.

When this remark initially surfaced over the summer, Gruber described it as a "speak-o," the verbal equivalent of a typo. But that was hard to believe given that Gruber elaborated on it at length, and given that another recorded remarked quickly surfaced in which Gruber said almost exactly the same thing. The recordings strongly suggested that he meant to say what he said, and that he knew what the implications were. 

In today's testimony, Gruber offered a new explanation, saying that what he meant when he made the remarks in 2012 was that he wasn't confident the federal government would set up an exchange; if the federal government didn't build a fallback, then that would mean that states choosing not to build their own would lose access to tax credits. In the prepared version of his testimony, he puts it like this: "The point I believe I was making was about the possibility that the federal government, for whatever reason, might not create a federal exchange."

For several reasons, it's difficult to buy this updated explanation. For one thing, it conveniently ignores the question Gruber was asked in that January 2012 presentation, which was about the establishment of exchanges. "It is my understanding that if states don't provide them," the questioner says, "then the federal government will provide them for the states."

In his response, Gruber doesn't dispute this at all. In fact, he opens his response by saying, "yeah," in agreement with the questioner. He does mention that the federal government has slow-walked the creation of its exchange, perhaps in order to encourage states to set up their own, but he doesn't once raise the possibility that the federal fallback won't exist at all. Instead, he talks only about the consequences of states declining to establish their own exchanges, not the consequence of what might happen if states decline and the federal government also fails to create an exchange.

Nor does he raise the possibility that the federal government might fail to set up an exchange in the other recording. In that recorded speech, he says that "if your governor doesn't set up an exchange, you're losing hundreds of millions of dollars of tax credits to be delivered to your citizens." Again, he's not saying, "if your governor doesn't set up the exchange and the federal government also doesn't set up an exchange." He's just saying that this is the result of a state not building its own exchange. 

Gruber's suggestion that he was thinking that the federal government might fail to create an exchange is also odd given that the federal government is required by law to do so if a state does not. Asked about this requirement today by Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.), Gruber claimed not to recall the exact details of what the law entails. That's tough to believe given that Gruber spent years as a high-profile, well-paid consultant to states considering setting up their own exchanges. But even if he does not remember the details now, it is even harder to believe that Gruber did not know about this requirement back in 2012, when he was in the midst of exchange-related consulting work for multiple states.

Finally, Gruber admitted that he has come up with this explanation for what he must have been trying to say entirely after the fact.  While "thinking about how I could have made that statement, I believe that's what I had in mind," he said today. This is an explicit admission that he's rationalizing his prior statement in order to fit with what he now believes.  

Gruber's appearance before the committee came after numerous additional videos surfaced this fall in which Gruber suggested that the process leading to the passage of Obamacare was not transparent. In those videos he said that the law relied on a convoluted structure to confuse the public about how it worked, and was written in a "tortured" way to achieve a desirable score from the Congressional Budget Office. His appearance was a kind of penance and public shaming, and he repeatedly attempted to distance himself from those remarks. Instead what he ended up proving was that he could torture his own remarks too. 

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  1. He did the best he could with the hand he dealt himself.

    1. Considering his main point is that the American people are too dumb or disinterested to pay attention, why does he even bother trying to come up with something?

  2. “You fucked up. You trusted me.”

  3. This is turning into one hell of a delicious clusterfuck. I can’t say I’m displeased.

        1. I have a beard now, Hugh! Jerk!

          1. Well she’s not doing a very good job.

            1. Well, it’s Katie Holmes. She’s second-hand after Tom Cruise got through with her.

              1. I was going to say something about you getting Tom Cruise’s sloppy seconds, but come to think of it that probably isn’t the case.

      1. “Dude, I think it might be best for us to never piss Cartman off again.”

        1. It will always be one of my favorite episodes. Always.

          1. I would postulate that that may be the greatest South Park episode of all time. It is hilarious, disturbing, and cements Cartman as an evil genius instead of just a fat idiot. Plus it gave us “your tears are so yummy and sweet”, and I think we are all thankful for that.

            1. I don’t know. Of all time? MechaStreisand? Tolerance Camps and the adventures of the Gerbil King? ManBearPig?

              1. It’s a special episode because it marked a certain maturity for the series, and is also when, as I said, Cartman got graduated from fat idiot to evil genius. Those episodes you listed are all great and memorable, but they don’t have the confluence of multiple show-changing factors. One reason I put forward the Tenorman episode is because it is so very memorable, possibly one of the most memorable episodes they have.

                I’m not a big one for “top 10” lists and whatnot, so there’s not much to argue here; I merely say that it is an extremely important episode in the South Park series.

                1. Fair enough.

                2. Love those episodes, and while I personally laughed hardest at “Die Hippie Die”, I think their best work was the two part episode on Family Guy. It had everything. It challenged CC to show an image of Mohammed, it made fun of Family Guy, and best of all, it got Brent Bozell’s panties in a wad, which is truly the mark of a high quality South Park.

            2. I can get behind that. SP has done a really decent job over the years trying to stay relevant, but not all episodes were created equal, nomsayin’?

              Also, OT, but your “we are all thankful for that” reminded me of this, and it makes me chuckle every time because I’m pretty sure it’s all my dog ever thinks about. (She doesn’t bark over and over again, but she’ll bark exactly once when she hears someone outside.)

            3. Gluten Free Ebola… Their dicks filed off… They wiggled a bit and then flew off… Some hit. People in the head! Dammit, their dicks FLEW OFF!

        2. “I made you eat your parents! Ha ha ha ha ha ha!”

          1. I liked that episode better when it was called Titus Andronicus.

  4. You know, if I were in Gruber’s shoes, I’d be wondering how my life had led to this pass: telling obvious lies to defend people who were busy lying with the intention of destroying my career and reputation.

    What a pathetic little creature. He reminds me of the accused in the Stalinist show trials who condemned themselves while declaring undying love for Stalin.

    1. “If only Comrade Stalin Obama knew!”

    2. That is exactly what he is and goddamn I enjoyed watching that slimy little fuck squirm.

      I can only imagine how humiliating it must be to sit still and quiet while receiving a tongue-lashing from the likes of Elijah Cummings on national television.

      I would like to thank Dr. Gruber for telling us exactly what the Obumblecare strategy was and then for providing us with such quality entertainment.

      1. Having Elijah Cummings scream “STUPID!” at him must be the lowest point of his life.

    3. I think he’d give you about 400,000 reasons.

      1. He made about $5.2 million from various federal and state consulting contracts.

    4. I’m not sure Gruber is lamenting his life at this point. He has several million reasons to keep telling lies to protect those he was working with. I’m reminded of one of my favorite “Simpsons” exchanges

      Jay Sherman: [disgusted] “How do you sleep at night?”
      Wolfcastle: “On top of a pile of money with many beautiful ladies.”

      1. Except that Gruber reeks of neediness. I get the impression he the whole reason he got into Economics and crunched his way up the ladder at MIT was so he could change the lives of others. Doing what, for a short time, he actually did — forcing his will on hundreds of millions, rubbing shoulders with the powerful, having his name reverently uttered by the likes of Obama and Pelosi — was a dream come true.

        But now he’ll go down as the guy who single-handedly destroyed the biggest state machine in American history, his name in the rolls with Lysenko and whoever finally gets the blame for global warming once that lie is exhausted.

        1. whoever finally gets the blame for global warming once that lie is exhausted.

          Michael Mann. No question.

          1. So that’s why its called Mann-made climate change! The more you know…

            1. HAHA! I’ll use that from now on.

            2. That is a good one. Steyn is calling Mann a multiple fraud in this latest post. It doesn’t appear that Steyn is intimidated by the defamation charges:
              http://www.steynonline.com/668…..-mann-goes

          2. Wow, Michael Mann is to blame for Miami Vice and global warming. Now that’s an impactful career.

        2. You are assuming that his remarks will destroy the ACA? I certainly hope you are right. But, I’m pretty sure that his legacy is very much intact. Also, he may not have the likes of Obama and Pelosi praising him in public anymore (at least not until all this dies down). But, he’s probably still on their Christmas Card lists. So, I’m pretty sure that his fragile ego is also still intact. I would also bet you money that he believes that history will sing his praises.

          1. Well, not assuming. But if the ACA is destroyed sooner rather than later, he’ll get a whole chapter in the story. Good-bye, Christmas cards.

            As to his ego, I can’t comment. He might truly have some deep-seeded insecurity for which he’s compensated in a number of ways, leaving him with a very compartmentalized mind — the arrogant half and the wormy little self-doubting geek half.

            1. He has a small penis.

              1. I think you’ve nailed it.

              2. Well, good thing he has a loose tongue… if you know what I mean.

                I am referring to cunnilingus.

                1. I’m not sure. He doesn’t quite seem like a cunning linguist.

      2. While I’m sure his piece of the action to date takes some of the edge off, I think he’s probably smart enough to know that ship has sailed. He was there to lend intellectual respectability. And, now, respectability and Jonathan Gruber aren’t two phrases that go together.

        But, Gruber’s real punishment is that he’s done. He’s no longer the Top Man. He no longer has the ears of highly placed politicians. He’s just another schmoe.

  5. But…but…shriek told us Gruber was so smart he would simply flex his frontal lobe and all the Congress critters’ skulls would explode!!!!!!

    1. Oh, shucks, I forgot that one!
      There’s getting to be so many, I lose count. If we’re lucky, 8% of turds posts aren’t lies.

    2. Gruber is Revok?!? Oh shit!!!

  6. I’d say something here about how Gruber has such a punchable face but I don’t want to endorse violence.

    1. I bet he has drugs in his pocket.

      1. And if the pigs don’t find the drugs in his pocket, better give him the “full treatment”. He has them, somewhere.

          1. Coffee flavored? Or “St. Petersburg Surprise”?

  7. “The point I believe I was making”

    I have heard this speech before

  8. Instead what he ended up proving was that he could torture his own remarks too.

    Did he have CIA help?

    *ducks*

  9. “But his new explanation doesn’t make much sense.”

    I’ll bet it does to the suckers who fell for the lies to begin with.

    1. Just thinking the same thing. The dupes are all breathing sighs of relief and telling themselves they weren’t such dupes after all.

    2. Some people will believe anything told to them, as long as it’s what they want to hear.

  10. Is that photo undoctored? They really put “Mr. Gruber PhD” on the name plate?

    1. He was hoping for some sympathy.

    2. piled higher and deeper

      1. Dammit.

    3. “Please address me as ‘doctor’. I believe I’ve earned it.”

      1. “It’s Dr. Evil. I didn’t spend six years in Evil Medical School to be called ‘mister,’ thank you very much.”

      2. Very few American PhDs in the physical sciences use the term Dr to refer to themselves, and if to another, it is either in formal settings or sarcastically.

        1. Most actually insist on being called by first name, even by students (including my professors). Even many physician-scientists (MD-PhDs) prefer first name.

          The only academics I’ve known who actually insist on being called doctor or professor have been social science or humanities professors.

        2. Hence the name plate. It’s the high-brow equivalent of putting a dunce hat on his head.

    4. Plate should have said “Jonathan Gruber, the Best and the Brightest.”

      1. Not “TOP MAN”?

        1. Haha, be hilarious to make him sit behind that.

      2. They should’ve just put one of those singing fish plaques next to him that sings “Take me to the River.” And require him, for the duration of the interview, to keep pressing the button over and making it sing the entire time he’s talking.

        1. Ohhhh God… if he reads this, I think he just may do that, except refer to the singing fish as his “counsel.”

    5. They were probably going to put “MIT” on there until MITgot wind of it.

    6. I watched part of that hearing. The sign actually said that. And to hear his small, whiny, lisping voice, sounding like it was on the verge of tears, say “I was trying to make myself seem smarter than I was” was perfect webTV!

      1. I’m guessing there’s going to be a whole lot more youtube content this evening.

  11. “what he must have been meant”

    Between Gruber and Suderman, it’s hard to know who’s responsible for that.

    1. Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo

      1. Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo!

        Also, Police police Police police police police Police police.

        And, Head head head head head head head head. (Though I think that one may be more appropriate from the previous cunning linguist comments above.)

  12. “Asked about this requirement today by Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.), Gruber claimed not to recall the exact details of what the law entails.”

    He was paid $400K to forget what he wrote.

    1. Except he can’t remember what he was paid, either.

      http://tws.io/1ww0TU8

      1. My goodness!
        He seems to think that oath is ‘way more flexible than I read it.

      2. “I hope you don’t mind if we send a couple of auditors to find out for you.”

        1. The first time in recorded history that the IRS adjusts someone’s reported income downward.

    2. If by ‘paid’ you mean he was payed a visit by some guys who threatened to fit him with some cement shoes unless he shut his fuckin’ mouth, then yeah, I bet he was paid.

    3. That’s why he wrote it down: so he wouldn’t have to remember.

  13. I may be enjoying this clip of Gowdy undressing Gruber more than I should, but fuck it. I’ll take it where I can get it.

    http://therightscoop.com/trey-…..ingenuous/

    Rand/Gowdy 2016

    1. It’s almost too painful to watch.

    2. Christ, it would be quicker if Gowdy just asked him if there’s anything ACA-related he said that he DOESN’T apologize for.

    3. Glorious Schadenfreude. That put a skip in my step.

    4. Gowdy is great mocking the political correctness angle that goober might have simply been being meanspirited and hurtful about the American voter.

      Who cares how the voter feels? What he thinks and how he votes it the thing!

  14. I’m much less disturbed by the Grubers of the world than I am by the many who thought, and think, that you could tax insurance companies and that would not be passed on to the insured, or that the penalty was not essentially really a tax.

    1. As if insurance company CEOs would just polish their monocles and order their manservants to collect the money for the tax straight from a Scrooge McDuck-esque room of gold coins labeled Obscene Profits.

      1. Its pretty terrifying, but a large portion of the population does operate with the mentality that anyone with a “C” level title has a pile of cash somewhere that is essentially limitless.

        1. Nevermind that the entire Health Insurance sector makes their bones on a 3% profit margin. Obscene, sure, but a different definition of that word.

      2. As if insurance company CEOs would just polish their monocles and order their manservants to collect the money for the tax straight from a Scrooge McDuck-esque room of gold coins labeled Obscene Profits.

        I think, as a libertarian, I may be opposed to bitcoin for the simple fact that it will make capitalism so much less fun.

        Numbers vaguely ticking upward is nowhere near as much fun as mounds of shit whimsically piling up. I mean, if all my wealth is contained in a few micrometers on a chip somewhere, what the hell am I going to drive my golf cart around?

        Not to mention that people already don’t understand shit about the Fed printing more money. When it doesn’t print money but pushes electricity, bandwidth, and trade deficits this way and that, shit will really get batty.

      3. Maybe we should just get rid of insurance companies and their ceos

        1. Maybe we should just get rid of socialists.

          1. I’m a libertarian, Brian, and thus am guided by the NAP principle. You?

            1. So, what part of getting rid of insurance companies and their ceos is consistent with the NAP?

              I thought I was just following your example, so I suspect they may overlap.

              1. Maybe because I can distinguish between individual people and a corporation? I have no problem with giving companies a death penalty. Individuals are another matter. Can you tell the difference? Let me know.

                1. “Maybe because I can distinguish between individual people and a corporation?”

                  By asking that question, and using “Socialist” in your handle, means you would fit right in a hierarchical structure.

                  May a thousand black block AnComs infest your anus.

                2. By the same logic, I could reply that socialism isn’t a person, either.

                3. american socialist, I have no idea what you think. It’s so poorly communicated and inconsistent that it’s incomprehensible.

                  You claim to be a “libertarian socialist”, but, as far as I can tell, you mainly comment to accuse libertarians of being closet republicans, while describing your hatred of republicans and defending democrats. What is a libertarian socialist? If I apply the same logic you use to libertarian closet republicans, I’d conclude that a “libertarian socialist” is a “closet democrat.”

                  Apparently, being a closet democrat and a staunch adherent is consistent with the NAP. How so?

                  For example, in this instance: by getting rid of insurance companies, do you imply that people should be forgiven from collectively organizing their resources in order to provide health insurance as a product? If so, how is that consistent with the NAP? Just because a group of people doing that are described as a “corporation”? If that’s all the mental twist to get you around the NAP with your policies, then it reminds me of Silence of the Lambs bullshit. Groups of people don’t magically become something else because you slap a label on them.

                  If you reject the legal fiction of corporations in general, then, how inspiring of you to declare your anarchism. Is that was a closet democrat libertarian socialist is? Because, if you’ll notice, government itself is a legal fiction. Closet democrats aren’t usually anarchists.

            2. american socialist|12.9.14 @ 7:20PM|#
              “I’m a libertarian, Brian, and thus am guided by the NAP principle.”

              You’re a lying piece of shit.

        2. american socialist|12.9.14 @ 5:39PM|#
          “Maybe we should just get rid of insurance companies and their ceos”

          Maybe you could go die a slow and painful death. Without insurance.

        3. Insurance companies are not the problem. It’s governments mandates, regulations, and the AMA.

        4. “Potato sellers make way too much money selling us potatoes, let’s drive them all out of business!”

          Ex post facto:

          “I’m hungry, why can’t I find anywhere to by potatoes?”

        5. How would we do that ?

          Beheading ?

          And if we got rid of them ad inistratively who would perform the function that they perform ?

          Or, are you now suggesting that we just change the name of those who provide that necessary function?

          Maybe change it to something like Comrade ? Or, your royale Highness ? Perhaps something like Yes Master ? Or we could just all repeat a good old Goodwin, ZIEG HEIL !

          Name your poison because that’s where it’s headed.

          Study:

          National Defense Resources Preparedness Executive Order #13603

          It says over and over this can all be done in times of Peace.

        6. How would we do that ?

          Beheading ?

          And if we got rid of them ad inistratively who would perform the function that they perform ?

          Or, are you now suggesting that we just change the name of those who provide that necessary function?

          Maybe change it to something like Comrade ? Or, your royale Highness ? Perhaps something like Yes Master ? Or we could just all repeat a good old Goodwin, ZIEG HEIL !

          Name your poison because that’s where it’s headed.

          Study:

          National Defense Resources Preparedness Executive Order #13603

          It says over and over this can all be done in times of Peace.

    2. What do you mean? Money is just a myth, man. Those guys won’t miss it. Hell, GM has operated continuously at a loss for decades.

      1. No, the rich have a secret orchard of money trees, don’t you know anything?

        1. Damn, all I get is a few apples!

          Where do I get that scion?

    3. But the Grubers of the world provide the intellectual cover they need to believe those things.

      1. Those people can invent intellectual cover out of whatever.

        1. Not quite.

          They can invent reasons to believe it. But, they can’t invent reasons to believe that everyone else believes it.

          1. I would have to differ just a little Bill.

            They can, and do, invent reasons to believe that everyone else believes it. They are self deluded.

            They just can’t actually invent other people who believe in it, as hard as they try.

    4. why would the stupid bother you more than the evil? The latter are just uninformed; that can be fixed. Or they are just political opportunists who can be voted out. Gruber, meanwhile, is a different level of scum.

      1. Nah, just a banal toady to power.

        1. this fucker is evil. He concocted a scheme he knew wouldn’t/can’t work, said so on numerous occasions, and his behind the veneer of his MIT cred so policy makers could make this shit into law. He seems headed for a deeper level of hell than the elected class.

      2. I guess I think ignorant voting is itself an evil given I have to live under the laws they make.

        I see people like Gruber as more ‘don’t hate the player, hate the game.’

        1. I guess I think ignorant voting is itself an evil ….

          One that should not be hindered by things like ID requirements.

    5. “I’m much less disturbed by the Grubers of the world than I am by the many who thought, and think, that you could tax insurance companies and that would not be passed on to the insured”

      So, “Blame the Victim” then.

    6. Most people learn most of what they believe through education. So, if educators are corrupt and liars, then that’s the root of the problem. Gruber is first and foremost an educator, and one with enormous power and influence as an educator, given where he teaches and what he teaches. So, the Grubers of the world should deeply disturb you.

  15. For several reasons, it’s difficult to buy this updated explanation. For one thing,

    …it’s utter bullshit ?

  16. For several reasons, it’s difficult to buy this updated explanation. For one thing, it conveniently ignores the question Gruber was asked in that January 2012 presentation, which was about the establishment of exchanges. “It is my understanding that if states don’t provide them,” the questioner says, “then the federal government will provide them for the states the fact that Gruber is an admitted liar.”

  17. Now that he’s been hauled before congress, I wonder if, say, NBC will find reason to introduce the guy to their viewers?
    Has the NYT had occasion to so much as print his name? In the Chron, it took a column by the token non-lefty before he showed up in print.

    1. Don’t be silly, just another Repub Show Trial and fake scandal…amirite?

    2. NYT has a summary up.

      Now for followup, we need to get out to those “peers” in the academic community for whose benefit he made those “insulting, arrogant, inexcusable” etc remarks in order to make himself look smarter. Because I’m guessing — he succeeded.

  18. I seem to recall it being in the news that states that didn’t set up exchanges would lose out on the subsidies and the subsidies were a carrot to get the states to set up the exchange and that the Federal government pushed back the deadline several times in hopes that the states would set up exchanges… where did all those news stories go?

  19. Who fucking cares? You mean an MIT professor and his research group got paid 400k for conducting research. And smarty-pants MIT professor thinks he knows more about health care than the general public. Shrugs. This is a scandal? He should of told them that the American people are stupid. It would have been worthwhile just to watch right-wing heads explode.

    On the upside, at least Lois Lerner and whoever called off the jets in Benghazi can relax now that right-wing crazies have found yet another government official who is victimizing them. It’s 1,532 and counting, no?

    1. cool story bro

    2. Re: American Stolid,

      Who fucking cares?

      I do. Wanna make something out of it?

      You mean an MIT professor and his research group got paid 400k for conducting research.

      Is that all they did? Oh, what a relief! I thought they wrote the fucking thing to fuck us in the ass. But no, I’ll take your word for it – after all, socialists never lie. Don’t they?

      1. You mean the millions of people that now have health insurance that wouldn’t have it prior to O-care. I’ve heard this nuisance of a fact referred to as a “rounding error” but I’m still left with the fact that 18.0% insured in 2011doesn’t equal 13.4% insured in 2014.

        1. Re: American Stolid,

          You mean the millions of people that now have health insurance that wouldn’t have it prior to O-care.

          Or wouldn’t care to get it prior to O-care. Now they’re mandated to have it.

          And you know what happens when you cross the government, don’t you? That’s right! You get Garnerized!

        2. american socialist|12.9.14 @ 5:36PM|#
          “You mean the millions of people that now have health insurance that wouldn’t have it prior to O-care.”

          You mean the people forced to buy something they didn’t want at the point of a gun?
          My goodness, strange how that works. And it seems it still isn’t working too well; you’re claiming 4.6% is “SUCCESS!”.

        3. What about the other 80+ % who are now paying more and getting less?

          At least you could be honest and just tax the 80% to the tune of 25% of what they pay for insurance and give it to the 20% who don’t, rather than trying to wrap the ACA up with a big bow and pass it off as a gift from our benevolent rulers.

          1. “At least you could be honest”

            You’re responding to a self-proclaimed socialist; he and honestly are only barely acquainted, if at all.

            1. Point taken, my mistake. sorry!

            2. Are you suggesting that Kim Jong Un didn’t really invent the airplane?

        4. american socialist|12.9.14 @ 5:36PM|#
          “You mean the millions of people that now have health insurance that wouldn’t have it prior to O-care.”

          Well, maybe that “millions” is so much horseshit also:
          “Earlier this year, Obama aides had said 7.3 million people had signed up and remained in health care plans through the law, but did not indicate that about 400,000 of these people were enrolled simply in dental plans, not full health insurance. This gap was politically important, because it meant the administration had fallen just short of its goal of enrolling 7 million people in plans through the ACA.”
          Guess the source, dipshit.

        5. I still cannot afford to buy health insurance, with the subsidies, and I am coerced into buying it. I am also coerced into giving the government an interest free “loan” where if I do not buy health insurance, the government can take the principal of that loan. Also if I buy health insurance, and get the subsidy. My employer gets a nasty bill.

          I like my employer. He is a good guy. This is the best small business I have ever worked for.

          AMSOC. When I say Fuck You. I say it from the bottom of my heart.

    3. He should of told them that the American people are stupid.

      Well, instead he cringed and groveled and declared himself “stupid, arrogant, trying to make himself look smarter than he is, inexcusable,” and a host of other things. And Elijah Cummings agreed with him.

      1. It would have been much more interesting and a good debate about the merits of the American system if gruber had simply told the committee that an MIT professor knows more about what is going on than a Teabagger who thinks Medicare is going broke.

        1. A socialist believes that a train of logical fallacies makes for a better debate. There’s a shocker!

        2. And I repeat: Instead, he apologized, groveled, cringed, and denounced himself as stupid, arrogant, glib, in over his head, and out of his league — and the Democrats on the Committee agreed.

        3. That’s like saying that it would have been a more interesting and good debate if Mitt Romney had simply told everyone he was smarter than the Obamaphone lady.

          Whatever your faults, american socialist, no one can claim that you’re not trying your hardest to raise the level of debate.

        4. Re: American Stolid,

          It would have been much more interesting and a good debate about the merits of the American system if gruber had simply told the committee that an MIT professor knows more about what is going on than a Teabagger who thinks Medicare is going broke.

          Do you think obfuscations and non sequiturs would help Gruber?

          Hmm. Interesting. Oh, wait, you’re a socialist. That explains it.

        5. american socialist|12.9.14 @ 5:42PM|#
          “It would have been much more interesting and a good debate about the merits of the American system if gruber had simply told the committee that an MIT professor knows more about what is going on than a Teabagger who thinks Medicare is going broke.”

          Hi, dipshit!
          Yeah, Gruber has almost the cred stupid fucking socialists do!

        6. But if an impeccably educated Ivy League economist says that Americans only support increasing minimum wage because they’re too stupid to understand the resultant disemployment effects, I bet you’d take off your pseudo-intellectual elitist mask and put on your “man of the people” mask and decry the ‘arrogance’ of it.

          I love that favored leftist argument: “you may have better arguments than me, but I’m sure there’s some PhD who has better ones than you!”

          Tell me American Socialist, when I’m done with my PhD, will you lick my shoes too just like you love to lick those of the esteemed Herr Professor Doktor Gruber, PhD?

          And from a guy who who probably considers himself antiauthoritarian at that! Ha, what a country.

    4. You’re a Top Man worshipper, no? Why else would you not care?

      What’s worse is that you are an apologizer for the very opposite of what most humans would consider honest and trustworthy. You are an apologist for the most reprehensible behavior–defrauding citizens of not just their money but (some of) their liberty.

      You’re sick.

    5. american socialist|12.9.14 @ 5:16PM|#
      “Who fucking cares?”

      Hi, dipshit!
      I don’t blame you for being embarrassed for falling for such obvious lies. But ignoramuses like you have been doing it forever, so just relax and call yourself a ‘socialist’ so others can quickly understand what a fucking idiot you are.

    6. What the fuck does “should of told them” mean? For God FUCKING sakes, it’s not as if we are talking….you have to type out your words. What ever happened to shame?

      It’s like the stupid grammar and context mistakes I get from my son’s school that can’t wait to sing the praises of common core. My kids are going to Catholic school.

    7. You mean an MIT professor and his research group got paid 400k for conducting research.

      No, an MIT professor got personally paid millions of dollars to circumvent government accounting.

      And smarty-pants MIT professor thinks he knows more about health care than the general public.

      No, a “smarty pants MIT professor” is using his credentials to support health care laws that make him millions of dollars but likely hurt the American public. You know: big money and corruption.

  20. Sorry, but a Speako is Obama saying there is 57 states. He knew how many states there are and simply misspoke. The essence of the message was also unchanged regardless of the number of states there were. A speako is not a guy who had significant input into drafting a law getting up and explaining in great detail how that law will work and what it takes to get it passed.

    1. Of course it was a speak-o. Gruber meant to say “Please pass the salt,” but it somehow came out as “We tortured the language of the ACA because of the stupidity of the American voter.” it’s the sort of slip anyone could make.

      1. Yeah, it’s kind of funny how he’s pulling the “I don’t remember” card now.

        I don’t remember exactly what I said, or what’s in the bill, or why I said that, but I’m pretty damn sure that it wasn’t, you know, what it sounds like I was saying, when I said that.

        I’m not sure what I said, or why I said it, but it certainly wasn’t what I said.

        OK. Got it, Dr. Genius.

    2. “A speako is not a guy who had significant input into drafting a law getting up and explaining in great detail how that law will work and what it takes to get it passed.”

      And who will take it in the shorts as a result.

      1. You mean like the millions of people who have medical insurance now as opposed to the past?

        1. If that was a good enough selling point, then, why didn’t they stop there?

          As far as interesting and good debates go, I think it would have been much better if Obamacare supports had simply said:

          “Yes, we’re going to mandate people buy insurance. And, we’re going to subsidize people to do so. And, this is going to insure more people, and give more people higher quality healthcare. And, what a shock, it’s going to cost more money. Believe it or not, you don’t drastically subsidize and consume more of the latest, greatest healthcare technology in the world for free.”

          Instead, they said:
          “We’re going to subsidize people to get insurance. And prevent health insurance companies from rejecting clients because of prior conditions. And, it’s going to reduce the deficit. And, no one is going to pay more money. And, everyone will be able to keep their plan. And, everyone will get a free pony, cat, or dog of their choosing. And it will generate income for everyone. And no one will be taxed for it, because it all magically pays for itself, plus more.”

        2. american socialist|12.9.14 @ 6:49PM|#
          “You mean like the millions of people who have medical insurance now as opposed to the past?”

          Hi, dipshit!
          You mean the “millions” of people forced to buy something they don’t want at gun point?
          How about the many more millions who now have rotten insurance at much higher prices? Do you mean them?

          1. american socialist|12.9.14 @ 6:49PM|#
            “You mean like the millions of people who have medical insurance now as opposed to the past?”

            Hi, again, dipshit!
            Since you’re too lazy or dishonest or both (yes), I found your source for your claims:
            “Who it counts: Gallup’s survey found the uninsured rate among US adults dropped from 18 percent in the third quarter of 2013 to 15.6 percent in the first quarter of 2014. The rate among blacks and low-income Americans fell by 3.3 and 3.2 percentage points, respectively.”
            http://www.vox.com/health-care…..nt-numbers
            2.4% isn’t a rounding error in engineering, but it certainly is in politics.
            Oh, and then:
            “Gallup: Rate of uninsured lowest since 2008”
            Big whoop.
            Fuck off, asshole.

        3. It’s easy to cover millions of people: just give them tax dollars. But that’s not health care reform because it’s not sustainable.

  21. What’s astounding here is the level of arrogance demonstrated by Gruber and the administration which probably provided him the lines he would provide in response to these questions.

    This guy was paid millions to advise states and government agencies on this law, but really just claimed ignorance of it in a congressional hearing.

    The Democrats basically are so sure that the media won’t call them on any of this that THIS is the best line of bullshit they could deliver. And most Americans won’t ever see or hear it. It will never air on the network news programs. It will never see the light of day on CNN. It will be buried and half reported in the NYT, WashPo, and other major print outlets.

    There’s the real story here. It’s not that politicians and their lackies lie, but that the media is willing to serve as complicit stooges for one of the two major political parties.

  22. So is Nancy Pelosi stupid, complicit, or both.

    1. What about surgically enhanced and senile?

  23. Ya gotta give the guy credit. He got paid, he can tell the House fuck off talk to my lawyer. What will they do? Not a fucking thing!

  24. The hearing was quite interesting. Gruber apologized over an over again, offering his “lack of expertise” in the political realm, and his “inexcusable comments”. But when asked if what he said was TRUE, he said yes, it was. But it was very regrettable. In short, Gruber told the truth. And the punishment he’s receiving is making him very sorry for telling the truth.

    I wish he would do two things:

    1) Grow a spine. Stick to the truth. If he feels like apologizing, fine – but please, don’t try to distance yourself from the truth – even the unsavory truth that most American voters are too stupid to know what’s going on.

    2) Abandon the idea that government is a source of solutions. Gruber’s smart enough to know that other “Big Government” programs have been unmitigated failures. Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, most of our foreign conflicts. Government IS failure. The bigger the government program, the bigger the failure.

    Stepping up and telling the truth, how Obozocare was passed based on and only because of a series of blatant lies, would go far to rehabilitating his credibility.

    1. BambiB|12.9.14 @ 11:47PM|#
      “In short, Gruber told the truth. And the punishment he’s receiving is making him very sorry for telling the truth.”
      Nope, see as follows

      “1) Grow a spine. Stick to the truth. If he feels like apologizing, fine – but please, don’t try to distance yourself from the truth – even the unsavory truth that most American voters are too stupid to know what’s going on.”
      Nope. Most American voters were wary of O-care from the beginning and continue to be so. Lefty ignoramuses either bought the story at the time and lie about it now, or were lying about it then.

      “2) Abandon the idea that government is a source of solutions. Gruber’s smart enough to know that other “Big Government” programs have been unmitigated failures.”
      No, he is not.

      “Stepping up and telling the truth, how Obozocare was passed based on and only because of a series of blatant lies, would go far to rehabilitating his credibility.”
      Fuck him. I hope MIT fires the slimy POS.

  25. Gruber should be tarred and feathered. That really is the only fitting punishment we can mete out.

  26. The most amazing thing about this is liberals who supported Obamacare continue to do so even after finding out they were lied to about costs, cost control and being able to keep your coverage. Gruber is correct about stupid americans when a law that delivers none of what is promised still retains support of the gullible.

    1. “Gruber is correct about stupid americans when a law that delivers none of what is promised still retains support of the gullible.”

      Well, wouldn’t you be embarrassed and defensive if you’d been suckered?
      I mean, look upthread; a self-proclaimed socialist claims to be not at all concerned that the law was passed based on lies.
      That’s nothing more than an attempt at excusing his ignorant gullibility.

    2. TRIGGER WARNING! As with Ferguson, UVA, and now ACA. It’s apparently the narrative that matters. It’s not facts, evidence, or data… it’s about how we feel. The damage done by Obamacare is less important than the fundamental conviction that it was spawned by righteous minds, and, therefore, is righteous. If it requires ongoing fiction in order to perpetuate its righteousness, so be it. I hope I haven’t offended anyone with my opinion.

  27. Speaking of tortured language… Gruber (now) never says “I always assumed the law would permit subsidies to be paid to those on the federal exchanges.” Instead it’s something to the effect of “my model always assumed that citizens of every state would be entitled to subsidies.” Well… that’s a very different supposition — particularly if he believed that every state would create its own exchange in order to gain access to federal subsidies. It’s also entirely consistent with his prior statements. I was hoping that someone on the committee would catch on to his verbal legerdemain. May SCOTUS will.

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  29. Apparently, in order to get Gruber to make a truthful statement, you have to avoid putting him under oath.

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